Implementation and Development of EPSAS is Questioned by FEE
The Federation of European Accountants has given a response to the European Commission on the implementation of the standards of ‘European Public Sector Accounting among the member states of the European Union.
There are general thoughts which have been added by FEE regarding the implementation and development of the EU EPSAS. Accrual based accounting has been greatly supported in the public sector which has entirely supported its implementation at all governmental levels. FEE is convinced that one set of standards that are of high quality could contribute greatly to sustainability and stability of public finances. FEE notes that in the area, there are already existing international standards, IPSAS that have been approved for use in the European Union and have been developed through a rigorous process that entails public consultation and offers an opportunity for participating.
However, a consultation that was much earlier arrived to two major conclusions that
1. In the member states of the EU, IPSAS may not be implemented easily as is the present state
2. For the foreseeable future developments, IPSAS show an appropriate framework. As such, the European Commission made suggestive proceedings with the make of these standards that are separately focused.
FEE sees as the way forward with much thought and consideration and the following points noted:
- When the worldwide standards are available already, it may not seem efficient to have the organization duplicated and the effort of forming EU public sector standards. FEE notes that there may be other cost efficient solutions that are accessible for making the accrual concept accounting a must in the EU and ensure that the same model is used by member states.
- The development of a solution that is harmonized and timely looks very doubtful. It is also likely that as compromise likelihood, many member states would be factored in the concluding EPSAS.
- The process of setting standards would become vulnerable to political views after developing EPSAS within the legislative process of the EU. This is because Member States representatives may desire to have their domestic agenda pushed forward in regard to accounting for public sector.